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April 11th, 2013

Truck Driver Shortage Could Impact Safety

The American Trucking Associations estimates that there is currently a demand for up to 25,000 drivers around the country. Just a few decades ago, those positions would have been snapped up quickly. In 2012, however, it does not seem like there are many takers for the job of a truck driver. The American Trucking Associations blames that situation on increasingly stringent trucking safety rules, and stricter recruiting practices, contributing to the shortfall.

The American Trucking Associations also estimates that over the next decade, the number of trucker vacancies could number as much as 140,000. It is clear to Houston truck accident lawyers that demand is far outstripping supply, and there are implications for trucking safety. In the absence of qualified truck drivers who hold a commercial driver’s license, and are ready to deal with the long hours and stresses of a truck driver’s job, many trucking companies are likely to hire less-than-qualified, unprofessional truck drivers.

The American Trucking Associations blames stricter toxicity screenings for truck drivers at least partly for the shortfall. According to the organization, many drivers are being frightened away by the stringent toxicity screenings, and the stricter recruitment standards that are now in place for truck drivers.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has been alerted to safety issues recently, and has come down especially hard on practices like driving while fatigued or sleepy. The American Trucking Association believes that all these stricter rules are the reason why trucker jobs are not as attractive as they used to be. Besides, drivers are required to maintain spotless records to continue maintaining their commercial driver’s license.

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